Starting Up As They Mean To Go On

Last week our very own founders, Alper Celen and Ritesh Tilani were nominated for Entrepreneur of the Year at the Arabian Business Startup Awards.  The Awards, which are now in their 3rd year, pay tribute to the digital disrupters and online innovators across the Middle East.  The dynamic duo was nominated for their unique contributions to online startups, particularly in the case of which is already transforming gifting in the UAE and beyond.

The judging criteria included business concepts, customer considerations, competitiveness and long-term growth potential.  Arabian Business whittled hundreds of applicants down to just 6 nominees in the Entrepreneur of the Year category.  Alper and Ritesh were finalists along with the founders of well-established technology players such as Bayzat and JadoPado.  The eventual winner of the category was Mai Medhat from Eventtus, an Egyptian startup dedicated to revolutionizing the event industry through socialized engagement.  No stranger to large crowds, earlier this year Mai shared the stage with Mark Zuckerberg at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit on a panel hosted by US President Barack Obama, discussing their individual entrepreneurial experiences.

“It was wonderful to see so many homegrown UAE brands nominated tonight, which is a testament to the talents and innovations of the industry here in the Emirates.  We were so honored to be included in such an impressive list of forward-thinking individuals and we can’t wait to see what they will all come up with next!” said Celen.  Tilani followed up by commenting “joi is not only about enhancing the gifting experience, but our customers’ lives as well.  To be recognized for our mission to spread happiness makes all of our hard work worthwhile.”

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